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Ashwin Topiwala

Senior Partner, Solicitor, Family, Mediation

Ashwin qualified as a Solicitor in 1993 and joined Dodds in 2002 and is one of the Senior Partners in the Family Department.

Ashwin is an accredited member of Resolution dealing with children’s issues and domestic abuse. Ashwin deals with cases regarding injunctions for protection of individuals, children and financial assets.

He specialises in the financial implications of divorce/relationship breakdown and has dealt with many high net worth cases involving businesses, pension issues and property and assets abroad.

Ashwin has been an accredited family mediator since 1999 and a member of the Family Mediation Council.  Ashwin is also an accredited Civil and Commercial Mediator with ADR Group.

Outside of work Ashwin enjoys music and has been a musician in a band and likes keeping fit and has taken part in marathons.

Leicester

Carly Horwell

Partner, Solicitor, Family Care

Carly Horwell has specialised in family law since qualifying in 2007, with a focus on children, including issues relating to domestic violence.

Carly is experienced in representing all parties within children proceedings, including parents, grandparents, step parents, extended family members and children.

Carly became a member of Resolution in December 2011 and has been a member of the Law Society’s Family Law Accreditation Scheme since May 2010 and the Law Society’s Children Panel Accreditation Scheme since December 2010.

Carly has experience of representing parties within complex family and children cases relating to residence and contact and disputes relating to use of parental responsibility including change of name, permission to change schools and permission to leave the country.

Carly joined Dodds Solicitors in January 2004 as a legal secretary, after completing a Law Degree. Carly undertook her training contact at Dodds Solicitors and qualified as a solicitor in January 2007. Carly became a partner at Dodds Solicitors on the 1st April 2012.

Leicester

Nikki Adams

Partner, Solicitor, Family Care

Nikki joined Dodds Solicitors in 2012 and became a Partner on 1st April 2017. She deals with legal matters relating to children and families, representing parents, relatives and children in care proceedings. Nikki also deals with cases where there are disputes between parents or family members over the arrangements for the care of a child or time spent with family members.

Nikki became a member of the children’s panel in 2013 and is well suited to working with children, young people and adults with learning or communication difficulties due to her previous experience of working in schools and with children with emotional and behavioural difficulties.

Nikki is well known for her empathetic manner and for always going that extra mile in representing her clients. Nikki has been described by those she has worked with as; understanding, diligent, approachable, fearless and down to earth.

Nikki commenced her legal career in Local Government in 2005 dealing with a broad range of corporate governance and public law matters. Nikki worked for three Local Authorities and specialised in child protection upon qualifying as a solicitor in 2008. Nikki practiced in Local Government until joining Dodds Solicitors in late 2012.

During her time in Local Government Nikki worked as legal adviser to the adoption panel and the health scrutiny committee in addition to her day to day work as a child protection solicitor. Nikki also developed and delivered training to professionals in the field of child protection and worked closely with Service managers on projects to implement changes in policy and working practices arising out of the PLO reforms and learning objectives arising out of serious case reviews.

Leicester

Kate Nield

Partner, Solicitor, Crime & Road Traffic

Kate qualified as a solicitor in 1995 and joined the Dodds family in May 2018.

Kate practises in all areas of crime including work at the Police Station and Magistrates Court and is also duty accredited.  Kate is qualified in advocacy for the vulnerable – both as witnesses and defendants and has dealt with many vulnerable clients and has previously dealt with mental health tribunals.

When Kate isn’t busy representing at the Magistrates Court her personal interests are running, reading and baking.

Leicester

Claire Cousin

Partner, Solicitor, Family Care

Claire joined the Dodds family in May 2019 as an Associate Solicitor in the Family Care department. She became a Partner on the 1st February 2022.

Claire qualified in 2010 with a focus on issues relating to children and has been a member of the Law Society’s specialist Children Panel Accreditation Scheme since 2013. Claire has experience of complex cases relating to non-accidental injury and death, sexual abuse, substance misuse, mental health issues, forced marriage, parental alienation and neglect.

In Claire’s spare time she is a keen baker and enjoys yoga to relax.

Leicester

Sukhdev Singh Bisla

Partner, Crime & Road Traffic

Sukhdev Bisla qualified in 2013 as a Solicitor. He joined the Dodds’ family in July 2021 and became a Partner in January 2024.

He is duty qualified and has higher rights of audience.

Sukhdev has experience in all areas of crime and regularly represents clients at the police station, the Magistrates Court and the Crown Court.

He works with all types of people and their families from all walks of life. Every client is important and Sukhdev prides himself on building solid relationships with his clients through providing a professional, yet friendly and understanding legal service.

Sukhdev is fluent in Panjabi and in his spare time he enjoys exercise, travelling and watching movies.

Faye Darlison

Associate Solicitor, Crime & Road Traffic

Faye qualified as a Solicitor in August 2009 and joined the Dodds family in November 2009 and became an Associate Solicitor in April 2016.

Faye is experienced in all areas of Criminal Law and regularly represents clients at the Magistrates Court and at the police station and also became Duty Solicitor Accredited in 2011.

When Faye isn’t at Court she likes to spend her spare time going to the gym, swimming and likes to travel.

Leicester

Philpa Verma

Associate Solicitor, Family Care

Philpa started her Dodds journey as a Trainee Solicitor and qualified as a Solicitor in April 2012 working in the Family Care department.

Philpa was admitted to the Children Law Accreditation Scheme in 2015 and covers parent/guardian and local authority work. Philpa has experience of complex cases relating to non-accidental injury and death, sexual abuse, substance misuse, mental health issues, forced marriage, parental alienation and neglect.

Philpa speaks Gujarati and Hindi and in her spare time enjoys cooking, watching films and exercising.

Leicester

Ajay Dhain

Associate Solicitor, Family

Ajay qualified as a Solicitor in April 2016 and joined the Dodds family in November 2012.

Ajay started his Dodds journey as a Paralegal in the family department and now as a qualified solicitor deals with a wide range of work to include Divorce, Children Act proceedings and Care proceedings. Ajay also speaks fluent Punjabi and Hindi.

When Ajay isn’t busy with his heavy caseload he enjoys going to the gym, reading fiction novels and follows Liverpool Football Club.

Leicester

Hannah Pallett

Associate Solicitor, Family Care, Crime

Hannah qualified as a solicitor in October 2008 and joined the Dodds family in December 2017 working for both the family and criminal teams.

She qualified as a higher court advocate in criminal advocacy in 2014

Hannah’s background is working in both care work and criminal defence. She now works solely for the care team, representing parents and local authorities. Hannah particularly enjoys court advocacy and working with young and vulnerable clients. Hannah has experience of complex cases relating to sexual abuse, mental health issues, non accidental injury and death, substance misuse, neglect and child exploitation.

When not working, Hannah enjoys spending time with her family and eating out.

Leicester

Thorolf Christensen

Associate Solicitor, Conveyancing

Thorolf has joined the Dodds family in October 2022 as an associate solicitor & Head of Conveyancing.

He qualified as a solicitor in October 2008, working mainly in employment law, residential conveyancing, private client and ecclesiastical law. He is also a qualified Notary Public but is currently not practising.

For the last two years Thorolf has worked in the City where he has done on most aspects of conveyancing, including buying and selling registered freehold and leasehold properties, unregistered property, new builds, right to buy, shared ownership, auction matters and has generally gained a wide experience in dealing with most property matters. Thorolf has also gained wide experience in dealing with post-completion matters, including first registration of properties without deeds and the first registration of unregistered properties. Thorolf particularly enjoys dealing with unregistered properties.

Outside of work, Thorolf enjoys reading, including Greek and Latin, and is a published author in Greek papyrology. He also enjoys riding his bike and is proud of his status as a MAMIL

Steve Morris

Solicitor, Crime & Road Traffic

Steve is our Senior Partner and Head of the Criminal Team. Steve worked closely for many years with our founding Partner, Brian Dodds.

Steve has over 30 years’ experience and is a highly regarded Criminal Advocate and Accredited Duty Solicitor representing clients at the Magistrates’ Court and police station and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise in all aspects of Criminal Law. Steve is also our Compliance Officer for Legal Practice (COLP).

When Steve isn’t in Court he follows Leicester City Football Club and has been a supporter and Season Ticket holder for many years having also played local rugby for Stoneygate and supported the Tigers.

Leicester

Alvia Malik

Solicitor, Family Care

Alvia qualified as Solicitor in May 2015 and joined the growing Care Team at Dodds in October 2019.

Alvia has specialised in representing parents and family members involved in Care proceedings since qualifying. She has experience of dealing with complex cases featuring honour based violence, substance misuse, radicalisation, non-accidental injuries and has represented parents who have faced learning difficulties and mental health issues.  Alvia aspires to expand her expertise in the law relating to children and is working towards obtaining the Children Law Accreditation.

Alvia is fluent in Urdu and Punjabi. Outside of work, Alvia enjoys baking and eating out with family.

Leicester

Susan Fletcher

Solicitor, Wills and Probate

Susan qualified as a Solicitor in 2001.

Since that time she has gained a wealth of experience in preparing simple and complex wills, dealing with estates following a death, including those which are complex and taxable. Susan can also advise on Lasting Powers of Attorney and Court of Protection applications.

When not working Susan enjoys travelling in her campervan with her husband and Toffee her Miniature Schnauzer, reading and walking.

Leicester

Mark Perrett

Solicitor, Family Law

Mark is one of our fresh new faces to the Dodds family joining us in December 2021.

 

Mark was a Consultant for Family Law Consultants and qualified as a solicitor in 2006.

He is an experienced Family Solicitor who specialises in all aspects of Family Law.

 

Mark offers specialist advice in relation to issues that arise when couples separate. He will ensure that you have a full understanding of the procedure involved in relation to your case, whether that be the divorce procedure or how to go about obtaining a financial settlement.

Here at Dodds Mark can advise you about divorce, finances, children and injunction proceedings both privately and publicly funded and will offer you sound and pragmatic advice so that you are able to make informed decisions. He will always try to ensure the advice given will help the individual concerned make the right decisions for them.

When he’s not working, he likes to spend time with Family and Friends. He supports Leicester City Football Club and often attends matches. He also enjoys walking and cycling for fitness.

Leicester

Khajal Topiwala

Solicitor, Crime & Family

Khajal began her Dodds journey as a summer placement Legal Assistant from 2015 and became a Paralegal in June 2018. In her time as a summer placement Khajal worked in both the family and criminal department and now predominantly works for the criminal department. Khajal was awarded her training contract with Dodds in September 2020 and is now Solicitor.

Khajal specialises in handling the motoring offence enquiries, helps prepare Crown Court cases and takes initial instructions from clients and completes their Legal Aid applications. She is currently training to be accredited for police station attendance as well as her Legal Practice Course and Masters.

In Khajal’s spare time she enjoys socialising with friends and visiting new places.

Leicester

Lara Hockney

Solicitor, Crime & Road Traffic

Lara joined the Dodds family in June 2021 as a Legal Assistant in our Family Care Department. Lara graduated from Lincoln University and progressed to complete her Master’s degree and Legal Practice Course at Nottingham Trent University, focusing on LGBTQ+ rights in Family Law.

 

Lara then began her training contract, starting in the Family Care Department and then completing a seat in the Criminal Department. During her time in the Criminal Department, Lara developed a real passion for this area of Law.

 

After successful completion of her training contract with Dodds, she qualified as a Solicitor into our Criminal Department in October 2023.

 

Lara now works within the Criminal Department as a Solicitor, dealing with and advising clients accused of all types of offences and working on cases in both the Magistrates and Crown Court. Lara has a keen interest in Youth Justice and helping vulnerable individuals navigate the Criminal Justice System.

 

In her spare time, Lara enjoys exploring new places, being out in nature and Bouldering.

Kelan Castaneda

Trainee Solicitor

Kelan joined Dodds Solicitors as a Paralegal in 2022, having worked previously in Care and Criminal Law for a number of years.

In January 2023 she become a Trainee Solicitor.

Kelan began studying law in 2016 and obtained her LLB from Nottingham Trent University in 2020. She is currently completing her LPC and Masters Degree at her Alma Mater.

Kelan supports the Child Care department in all aspects of childcare law including drafting documents, preparing applications, taking instructions, attending meetings and hearings and co-works matters with the solicitors of the care department.

Kelan has significant experience in attending meetings with parents at all stages of social care involvement. She also has extensive experience in care proceedings supporting fee earners in the team who are representing parents and other family members, local authorities, children’s guardians and children assessed as Gillick competent.

Kelan has assisted and worked alongside fee earners in a range of complex cases, which include non-accidental injuries, fictitious illness cases, child and adult sexual abuse, chronic drug and alcohol abuse and psychological trauma. Kelan is committed to providing a high standard of client care. She credits herself with her approachable and sensitive manner when dealing with clients who are experiencing extremely difficult circumstances.

In her spare time, Kelan enjoys baking as well as spending time with friends, family and her cats Charlie and Maggie.

Yazmina Wallace

Trainee Solicitor, Wills & Probate

Yazmina joined the Dodds family in May 2023 as a Trainee Solicitor in the Probate and Wills Department.

Yazmina graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2019 and completed her part time Masters and Legal Practice Course at Nottingham Law School in 2021.

In addition to Probate and Wills, Yazmina also has Conveyancing experience.

In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Donna Plumb

Legal Clerk, Crime

Donna joined the Dodds family in 1996 and forms part of our Criminal Department as a Legal Clerk.

Donna predominantly deals with matters in the Crown Court and has dealt with a range of complex cases including Murder, crimes under the Modern Slavery Act and historic sexual offences. Donna also qualified as an Accredited Police Station Representative in 2017.

In her spare time Donna enjoys cooking, eating out and exploring cities with her family and friends.

Leicester

Patsy Litt

Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, Private Client

Patsy joined the Dodds family in May 2012 and forms part of our residential conveyancing team.

Patsy has worked in many areas of legal practice so has extensive knowledge of the legal working environment. Patsy is an Associate member of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives and has worked in private legal practice in excess of 19 years.

Outside of work Patsy enjoys walking, cycling and spending time with family.

Leicester

Becky Tacey

Senior Paralegal

Becky joined the Dodds family in April 2014 as a paralegal in the Family Care Department and is now a Senior Paralegal.

Becky has worked in private practice family law for over 20 years. Becky has past experience in family private law but has predominately worked in family public law. Becky began studying law in 2004 whilst in employment via the Institute of Legal Executives route and qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive in 2009.

Outside of work she enjoys running and has participated in many funding raising events including the Leicester half marathon, cancer research muddy runs and 10k’s and the London Moonwalk. She also enjoys baking and reading.

Leicester

Jo Hill

Senior Paralegal

Jo joined the Dodds family in April 2013 as a Legal Assistant in the Family Care Department and is now a Senior Paralegal.

Jo has worked in private practice family law for the past 20 years. Jo has past experience in family private law but has worked in family public law since joining Dodds. Jo began studying law in 1999 and graduated from Lincoln University in 2001 with a LLB Honours Degree.

Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family and most weekends she can be found watching from the side-lines whilst her son plays football.

Leicester

Denise Higgins

Paralegal

Denise joined the firm in February 2013 and was employed as secretary in the Conveyancing department dealing primarily with transcribing dictation, but has been promoted to a paralegal role dealing with buying and selling of leasehold properties, right to buy purchases and auction sales.

She has worked in the legal profession for almost 40 years and started her career in the commercial property department at her former employer, but then moved into residential property dealing primarily with plot sales and acting for housing associations dealing with preparation and completion of licenses to assign and staircasing sales.

Outside of work, Denise is a long term season ticket holder of Leicester City Football Club and enjoys going to concerts.  She also enjoys reading and going for long dog walks with her husband and Jessy, her Staffordshire bull terrier.

Sian Bishop

Paralegal

Sian has joined  the Dodds family in August 2023 as a Paralegal in the Family Care Department.

She has worked in private practice family law for over 20 years.

Sian has past experience in crime and private family law but has worked exclusively in family public law since 2002.

Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family and friends and taking long walks with her dog.  Most of her free time is spent on the side lines watching her son play football, rugby or competing in athletic competitions.

Sarah Mills

Practice Manager, Accounts

Sarah is our Practice Manager and Head of the Accounts Team and has been part of the Dodds family for over 20 years.

Sarah has worked as a Legal Cashier for over 30 years and this is how her career started with Dodds. She then progressed as Practice Manager and has now held this position for more than 10 years. Sarah is also our Legal Aid Quality representative.

Whilst Sarah isn’t organising staff and the running of the business, she is an avid supporter of Leicester Tigers and enjoys holidays in Cornwall and the Lake District.

Leicester

Naseem Saleem

Legal Cashier, Accounts

Naseem joined the Dodds family in September 2019 as a Legal Cashier.

Naseem has worked in legal accounts for over 15 years as a cashier in small and large firms across Leicester. Naseem forms part of our accounts team and deals with all Dodds daily transactions but has ownership of our sales ledger accounts.

When Naseem doesn’t have her head in invoices she enjoys walking, days out and baking for friends and family.

Leicester

Anna Marciniak

Legal Practice Administrator, Accounts

Anna joined the Dodds Family in June 2021 as our Legal Practice Administrator.

Anna has worked in administration for over 10 years across different sectors, most recently in Estate Planning and Will Writing Services.

Here at Dodds Anna is involved in Human Resources, Practice Management Administration and social media.

Outside of her administrator duties Anna loves travelling, a good film and days out with family and friends.

Leicester

Services

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Over 30 years' experience

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We cover a range of legal services here at Dodds Solicitors. We provide expert advice and professional legal services for clients in and around Leicester.

Contact us today, or give our office a call on 0116 201 8566.

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Address:
32 Friar Lane, Leicester,
Leicestershire, LE1 5RA

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Email: enquiries@dodds-solicitors.co.uk

 

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